Economic Policy in the Carter Administration

By Anthony S. Campagna | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Chapter 10
Conclusions and Legacy

The Carter administration has been characterized (or dismissed) as ineffectual and judged as a failure. Such a conclusion is easy to reach given its legislative record and administrative ineptitude. Were the times so challenging that the nation was ungovernable, as some have alleged? Was Carter a trustee of the public welfare, making unpopular decisions? Was Carter pursuing what was right, spurning special interests requiring that he be above politics as usual? His defenders answer yes to these questions and ask that the Carter administration be viewed in this revised light.

After assessing these questions, however, Burton Kaufman, a Carter biographer, reluctantly concludes that attempts to reassess the Carter administration are flawed and sums up his analysis as follows: "The events of his four years in office projected an image to the American people of a hapless administration in disarray and of a presidency that was increasingly divided, lacking in leadership, ineffective in dealing with Congress, incapable of defending America's honor abroad, and uncertain about its purpose, priorities, and sense of direction." 1 The original and immediate assessments of this administration were, in the end, closer to the truth than the revisionists' portrayal.

It is difficult to quarrel with this concise appraisal of the Carter administration, and in this book, there are numerous examples and references that support such a conclusion. In general, then, I would agree with this assessment of the administration in its totality. We must now inquire if the same indictment can be applied to the economic policy-making of the administration.

As applied solely to Carter's domestic economic policy-making, the Kaufman quote is generally accurate, but a bit harsh and in need of qualification. It is too sweeping a statement when applied to an area as volatile as economics. Simple, straightforward, and uncontroversial.

-201-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Economic Policy in the Carter Administration
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 216

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?